DUP MP for North Antrim, Ian Paisley, has hit out at “Pavlov dog” figures in academia and in opposition political parties for “salivating” at the chance to side with the EU against the UK in the ongoing row over the hated Northern Ireland Protocol.
“I don’t care what the Dublin government thinks about this” he said. “And all the Pavlov dogs from academia and some political parties who are salivating at supporting the EU and what the EU needs… none of those parties have put their shoulder to the wheel at trying to solve the business problems that this Protocol has unfortunately created.”
Paisley’s comments to the Commons were sparked by the government’s new command paper on the issue, which calls for fresh talks over the Protocol to ensure easier circulation of goods, the protection of the UK’s customs territory, and the end of ECJ rule over UK-EU relations.
This website reported earlier today how Boris Johnson’s right-hand man on Brexit, Lord David Frost, had told peers that the UK would be justified in using Article 16 to suspend troublesome parts of the Protocol – but he also said the government would seek a new arrangement through negotiation first.
That offer for renewed talks has already been rejected churlishly by European Commission VP Maroš Šefčovič, raising the prospect of unilateral action from Westminster to resolve the unacceptable situation.
Speaking in the Commons, Paisley suggested the command paper could lead to claimants in an ongoing legal battle against the government pausing their legal action, and referred to comments by Sir Archie Norman, saying the Protocol is “a petty enforcement of rules that protect nobody in Northern Ireland.”
Calling for more clarity from the government, Paisley concluded: “I hope that the Secretary of State could put some meat on the bone, where he has mentioned in Paragraph 79 of the command paper that this will move forward at pace. What exactly does that mean in terms of the timeline?
“We need to know within a matter of weeks that this will be finally resolved.”